11th Robert Bateman Lecture - author, artist and activist Franke James
When Franke James wrote to Prime Minister Harper in 2008 telling him that Canada should ‘make polluters pay’, she never imagined the political storm it would cause -- and suck her into.
Royal Roads University is pleased to welcome “blacklisted” artist, environmental activist and award-winning author Franke James as its 11th Robert Bateman Lecturer, August 11, 2015.
James, author of Banned on the Hill: A True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship, will be speaking about her lively battle for free expression -- and how it led to her putting her iconic “Do Not Talk about Climate Change” artwork on bus shelters in Ottawa, Calgary, Halifax and even Washington, DC. She'll also talk about how she helped persuade over 8,000 people to follow her lead and write to the prime minister to protest the Northern Gateway Pipeline.
James’ lively and challenging work as an artist and communicator “advocating a message that was contrary to government’s policies on the subject” led to her winning this year’s inaugural PEN Canada / Ken Filkow Prize, a prize to be awarded annually to an individual or institution in Canada who has demonstrated courage and integrity in freeing information and ideas from restraint or interference.
James has also been awarded the Liberty Award for Excellence in the Arts, by the BC Civil Liberties Association, noting her focus on environmental and social justice, and her fight for free expression as a few of the reasons they named her recipient.
"Franke James is hopelessly naïve and incurably optimistic,” says Richard Littlemore a former journalist and co-author of Climate Cover-up. “Seriously, in an age when so many people trudge through life like death camp guards, blithely accepting that politicians are corrupt, that climate change is inevitable, and that their best recourse is to go along for the ride, Franke James can’t contain the urge, when she sees something wrong, to stand up and shout “That’s not right!””
In light of the soon-to-be dropped federal election writ, her lecture is timely and relevant and is sure to provoke and possibly inspire others to action.
The lecture is free and the public is welcome to attend.